JOHOR BARU: A total of 40 foreign women, believed to work as prostitutes, were picked up in a raid at several massage parlours at a mall in the city centre here.
Johor Immigration director Baharuddin Tahir said the department also arrested six foreign men and a local woman who managed one of the premises.
He said enforcement teams from Setia Tropika and Bangunan Sultan Iskandar were sent on the operations, codenamed Ops Gegar and Ops Selera, at 4.45pm on Sunday (Dec 3) following a public tip-off.
“Some of the massage centres were said to also provide prostitution services to the customers," he added.
Baharuddin said the teams rounded up 32 Indonesian women, eight Thai women, three Indonesian men, two Indian men and a Bangladeshi man.
All the suspects are aged between 21 and 58, he said in a statement on Monday (Dec 4).
He said the initial investigation revealed that all the foreigners had violated the terms and conditions of the social visit pass and temporary employment visit pass.
One of them possessed a fake Workforce Recalibration Programme work permit, he added.
The suspects are being investigated for harbouring illegal immigrants, overstaying, working without a permit as well as entering the country and staying without valid documents.
“We would like to remind the people that stern action will be taken against those who are found guilty of hiring illegal immigrants.
“The department will continue to hunt down the illegals and those involved in immoral activities,” Baharuddin added.